Retirements in any sport are just a natural part of the process. Everyone knows they happen sooner or later, and everyone expects them.
Still, that didn't make the rash of retirements following last Saturday's UFC Stockholm any less surprising. Three consummate professionals of the Octagon hung up their gloves this past week. Here they are in their own words, followed by the reactions from fans, fighters, and media upon hearing the news.
“I fight because I love this sport, because I want to be the best and compete against the best. It feels like I don’t have it anymore. I have done it for a long time. I’m 32 years old, I have kids, built the life that I wanted thanks to this sport. It feels like I’m getting old. We all have to realize that it’s the end of the story. I never did this for the money or anything like that… I did it because I want to be the best and if I can’t be the best then it is what it is. Now, I’ll focus on my kids, I own a gym and have a couple of other projects going on… Let’s see what’s next. I built the life that I wanted, so let’s see what is the next chapter.” ~Alexander Gustafsson